Dr Eric Harshfield

University position

Research Associate


Department of Clinical Neurosciences


Neurology Unit



Home page

http://www.neurology.cam.ac.uk/neurolo... (personal home page)

Research Theme

Clinical and Veterinary Neuroscience


My current research primarily focuses on utilising epidemiological, clinical, genetic, and imaging data to investigate relationships between vascular risk, stroke, and dementia. Examples of specific projects that I have been involved in include (1) investigating the causal role of haematological traits in stroke and its subtypes using Mendelian randomisation, and (2) performing a pooled individual patient analysis of clinical trials on stenting for symptomatic vertebral artery stenosis.

Research Focus







Clinical conditions

Alzheimer's disease

Cardiovascular diseases

Cerebrovascular disorders


Depressive disorders

Genetic disorders



Cross-sectional and cohort studies


Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)

Mendelian randomization

Neuropsychological testing

Positron Emission Tomography (PET)

Randomised control trials

Recombinant protein expression



Will Astle

Hugh Markus

Willem Ouwehand

Matt Sims

Matthew Traylor

United Kingdom

Cornela van Duijn Web: https://www.ndph.ox.ac.uk/team/co...


Ale Algra Web: https://www.umcutrecht.nl/en/Rese...

Stéphanie Debette Web: https://www.bordeaux-population-health.center/profile...

Martin Dichgans Web: https://www.mcn.uni-muenchen.de/members...

Susanna Larsson Web: https://staff.ki.se/people/...

Associated News Items



    Cho BPH, Nannoni S, Harshfield EL, Tozer D, Gräf S, Bell S, Markus HS (2021), “NOTCH3 variants are common in the general population and associated with stroke and vascular dementia: an analysis of 200,000 participants” J Neurol Neurosurg Psychiat

    Georgakis MK, Harshfield EL, Malik R, Franceschini N, Langenberg C, Wareham NJ, Markus HS, Dichgans M (2021), “Diabetes mellitus, glycemic traits, and cerebrovascular disease: a Mendelian randomization study” Neurology 96(13):e1732-e1742

    Harshfield EL, Georgakis MK, Malik R, Dichgans M, Markus HS (2021), “Modifiable lifestyle factors and risk of stroke: a Mendelian randomization analysis” Stroke 52(3):931-936


    Bell S, Gibson JT, Harshfield EL, Markus HS (2020), “Is periodontitis a risk factor for ischaemic stroke, coronary artery disease and subclinical atherosclerosis? A Mendelian randomisation study” Atherosclerosis 313(2020):111-117

    Harshfield EL, Fauman EB, Stacey D, Paul DS, Ziemek D, Ong RMY, Danesh J, Butterworth AS, Rasheed A, Sattar T, ul-Asar Z, Saleem I, Hina Z, Ishtiaq U, Qamar H, Mallick NH, Yaqub Z, Saghir T, Rizvi SNH, Memon A, Ishaq M, Rasheed SZ, Memon F-u-R, Jalal A, Abbas S, Frossard P, Saleheen D, Wood AM, Griffin JL, Koulman A (2020), “Genome-wide analysis of blood lipid metabolites in over 5,000 South Asians reveals biological insights at cardiometabolic disease loci” medRxiv 2020.10.16.20213520

    Harshfield EL, Pennells L, Schwartz JE, Willeit P, Kaptoge S, Bell S, Shaffer JA, Bolton T, Spackman S, Wassertheil-Smoller S, Kee F, Amouyel P, Shea SJ, Kuller LH, Kauhanen J, van Zutphen EM, Blazer DG, Krumholz H, Nietert PJ, Kromhout D, Laughlin G, Berkman L, Wallace RB, Simons LA, Dennison EM, Barr ELM, Meyer HE, Wood AM, Danesh J, Di Angelantonio E, Davidson KW, Emerging Risk Factors Collaboration (2020), “Association between depressive symptoms and incident cardiovascular diseases” JAMA 324(23):2396-2405

    Harshfield EL, Sims MC, Traylor M, Ouwehand WH, Markus HS (2020), “The role of haematological traits in risk of ischaemic stroke and its subtypes” Brain 143(1):210-221


    Chauhan G, [...], Debette S, Stroke Genetics Network (SiGN), the International Stroke Genetics Consortium (ISGC), METASTROKE, Alzheimer's Disease Genetics Consortium (ADGC), and the Neurology Working Group of the Cohorts for Heart and Aging Research in Genomic Epidemiology (CHARGE) Consortium (2019), “Genetic and lifestyle risk factors for MRI-defined brain infarcts in a population-based setting” Neurology 92(5):e486-e503

    Harshfield EL, Koulman A, Ziemek D, Marney L, Fauman EB, Paul DS, Stacey D, Rasheed A, Lee JJ, Shah N, Jabeen S, Imran A, Abbas S, Hina Z, Qamar N, Mallick NH, Yaqoob Z, Saghir T, Rizvi SNH, Memon A, Rasheed SZ, Memon FU, Qureshi IH, Ishaq M, Frossard P, Danesh J, Saleheen D, Butterworth AS, Wood AM, Griffin JL (2019), “An unbiased lipid phenotyping approach to study the genetic determinants of lipids and their association with coronary heart disease risk factors” J Proteome Res 18(6):2397-2410

    Markus HS, Harshfield EL, Compter A, Küker W, Kappelle LJ, Clifton A, van der Worp HB, Rothwell P, Algra A, on behalf of the Vertebral Stenosis Trialist’s Collaboration (2019), “Stenting for symptomatic vertebral artery stenosis: a preplanned pooled individual patient data analysis” Lancet Neurol 18(7):666-673

    Stacey D, Fauman EB, Ziemek D, Sun BB, Harshfield EL, Wood AM, Butterworth AS, Suhre K, Paul DS (2019), “ProGeM: a framework for the prioritisation of candidate causal genes at molecular quantitative trait loci” Nucleic Acids Res 47(1):e3


    van der Laan SW, Harshfield EL, Hemerich D, Stacey D, Wood AM, Asselbergs FW (2018), “From lipid locus to drug target through human genomics” Cardiovasc Res 114(9):1258-1270


    Burgess S, Harshfield E (2016), “Mendelian randomization to assess causal effects of blood lipids on coronary heart disease: lessons from the past and applications to the future” Curr Opin Endocrinol Diabetes Obes 23(2):124-30


    Chowdhury R, Alam DS, Fakir II, Adnan SD, Naheed A, Tasmin I, Monower MM, Hossain F, Hossain FM, Rahman MM, Afrin S, Roy AK, Akter M, Sume SA, Biswas AK, Pennells L, Surendran P, Young RD, Spackman SA, Hasan K, Harshfield E, Sheikh N, Houghton R, Saleheen D, Howson JM, Butterworth AS; Cardiology Research Group, Raqib R, Majumder AA, Danesh J, Di Angelantonio E (2015), “The Bangladesh Risk of Acute Vascular Events (BRAVE) Study: objectives and design” Eur J Epidemiol 30(7):577-87

    Harshfield E, Chowdhury R, Harhay MN, Bergquist H, Harhay MO (2015), “Association of hypertension and hyperglycaemia with socioeconomic contexts in resource-poor settings: the Bangladesh Demographic and Health Survey” Int J Epidemiol 44(5):1625-36

    Interleukin 1 Genetics Consortium, Freitag DF, Butterworth AS, Willeit P, Howson JM, Burgess S, Kaptoge S, Young R, Ho WK, Wood AM, Sweeting M, Spackman S, Staley JR, Ramond A, Harshfield E, [...], Di Angelantonio E, Chowdhury R, Nordestgaard BG, Saleheen D, Thompson SG, Danesh J (2015), “Cardiometabolic effects of genetic upregulation of the interleukin 1 receptor antagonist: a Mendelian randomisation analysis” Lancet Diabetes Endocrinol 3(4):243-53

    White IR, Rapsomaniki E, Emerging Risk Factors Collaboration (2015), “Covariate-adjusted measures of discrimination for survival data” Biometrical J 57(4):592:613


    Chowdhury R, Harshfield E, Roy S, Flora MS, Akram KA, Bhuiya A, Ahsan H (2014), “Life, health, and safety of industrial workers in bangladesh: should they be driven by economic rationale or moral imperative?” J Occup Environ Med 56(4):e12-3

    Emerging Risk Factors Collaboration, Di Angelantonio E, Gao P, Khan H, Butterworth AS, Wormser D, Kaptoge S, Kondapally Seshasai SR, Thompson A, Sarwar N, Willeit P, Ridker PM, Barr EL, Khaw KT, Psaty BM, Brenner H, Balkau B, Dekker JM, Lawlor DA, Daimon M, Willeit J, Njølstad I, Nissinen A, Brunner EJ, Kuller LH, Price JF, Sundström J, Knuiman MW, Feskens EJ, Verschuren WM, Wald N, Bakker SJ, Whincup PH, Ford I, Goldbourt U, Gómez-de-la-Cámara A, Gallacher J, Simons LA, Rosengren A, Sutherland SE, Björkelund C, Blazer DG, Wassertheil-Smoller S, Onat A, Marín Ibañez A, Casiglia E, Jukema JW, Simpson LM, Giampaoli S, Nordestgaard BG, Selmer R, Wennberg P, Kauhanen J, Salonen JT, Dankner R, Barrett-Connor E, Kavousi M, Gudnason V, Evans D, Wallace RB, Cushman M, D'Agostino RB Sr, Umans JG, Kiyohara Y, Nakagawa H, Sato S, Gillum RF, Folsom AR, van der Schouw YT, Moons KG, Griffin SJ, Sattar N, Wareham NJ, Selvin E, Thompson SG, Danesh J (2014), “Glycated hemoglobin measurement and prediction of cardiovascular disease” JAMA 311(12):1225-1233


    Harshfield E, Lantagne D, Turbes A, Null C (2012), “Evaluating the sustained health impact of household chlorination of drinking water in rural Haiti” Am J Trop Med Hyg 87(5):786-95


    Samie A, Tambani T, Harshfield E, Green E, Ramalivhana JN, Bessong PO (2010), “Antifungal activities of selected Venda medicinal plants against Candida albicans, Candida krusei and Cryptococcus neoformans isolated from South African AIDS patients” Afr J Biotechnol 9(20):2965-2976


    Harshfield E, Jemec A, Makhado O, Ramarumo E (2009), “Water purification in rural South Africa: ethical analysis and reflections on collaborative community engagement projects in engineering” Int J Serv Learn Eng 4(1):1-14